Tag Archives: smart

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smart boss

Smart Boss, Weak Leader, Do You Know One?

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Do you have a smart boss who at the same time may be a weak leader? Could you be one?

They really aren’t that hard to find.

They’ve often been promoted because they are very good at their craft. Perhaps they are a master in their trade, a genius engineer, or an incredible salesperson. Yet, when it comes to honing the culture of the organization or team, they are completely clueless.

Intensifying the situation is that they often continue to achieve accolades from people around them who see them in this role of leader, but only from the technical aspect of the job.

Worse, junior team members may see supporting the boss as a powerful ticket to enhancing their own career.

This often boosts confidence in the boss that he or she is doing is exactly what is needed.

The reality check? The reality check may be that while their technical skills are exemplary their leadership skill has stalled the progress of the people who are relied upon every day to further the organizational cause.

The team is stuck. Performance is off.

Who gets the blame?

Smart Boss

In most cases the blame is passed downstream. “It’s not me [the boss], it must be you. [the employee]”

The opposing force of blame might be leadership responsibility. When leadership team members understand that no matter what, they are responsible, the dynamic shifts and the vision changes.

What are the biggest areas of breakdown?

Maybe it is employee dependability and reliability. Who owns that? Who made the hire? It is easy to suggest it was a bad hire, and while that does happen, is there any responsibility within the culture?

Maybe it is drama, end-runs, and breakdowns in the chain of command. Who owns that? It may be easy to suggest the persons engaged in such activity own it, yet the leader allows it to continue.

The patterns nearly always point to culture.

Who owns the culture? The best answer is, everyone. Everyone.

The communication, the behaviors, the actions and inactions, all point back to culture. The good and the bad, they’re part of the culture. Culture is not just about the good.

Leadership is a responsibility.

What is one of the most powerful traits of a smart boss, weak leader?

In a word, ego.


Dennis E. Gilbert is a business consultant, speaker (CSPTM), and culture expert. He is a five-time author and the founder of Appreciative Strategies, LLC. His business focuses on positive human performance improvement solutions through Appreciative Strategies®. Reach him through his website at Dennis-Gilbert.com or by calling +1 646.546.5553.

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act smart

Do You Act Smart, Poised, Confident?

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Likely nearly everyone has heard, “Dress for Success.” Some don’t subscribe, and that is OK. However, some questions may remain. Can you act your way to success? Do you act smart? Are you poised, confident, and do you appear successful?

There are plenty of people who are working for professional advancement. Everyone from students anticipating graduation to the senior vice president who is seeking the CEO role. What are your chances for success?

Define Success

Everyone defines success differently.

One person may define success as having a modest home with a swing set and sandbox in the backyard. Another person may believe it is a high-rise Manhattan apartment, a fleet of expensive black cars with tinted windows, and several vacation homes.

Setting aside our differences in definition, how will you get there?

Some believe, what you think, you will become. This is mainstream thinking for many motivational and inspirational thought leaders. I subscribe to this, at least in part.

Act Smart, Poised, and Confident.

Consider asking yourself some of these questions:

  • What if I acted totally committed and excited about the new product launch? What if I appeared totally committed to it, even when I may still have a few concerns?
  • Imagine yourself right before your next big presentation. An important presentation that you never really saw yourself doing this way or on this platform. Instead of feeling inferior, nervous, and afraid, what if you acted completely confident?
  • What would the outcome be if you delivered the change with an appropriately energetic and commanding presence. Even if in the back of your mind you had a few worries about this path?

I believe in dress for success. I also believe in the power of our mind to change our own personal outlook and create a self-fulfilled prophecy.

What do you believe?

Have you considered how the outcomes change when you act smart, poised, and confident?


Dennis E. Gilbert is a business consultant, speaker (CSPTM), and culture expert. He is a five-time author and the founder of Appreciative Strategies, LLC. His business focuses on positive human performance improvement solutions through Appreciative Strategies®. Reach him through his website at Dennis-Gilbert.com or by calling +1 646.546.5553.

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The Difference Between Lucky or Smart

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You’ll often hear someone say, “They got lucky.” Sometimes you’ll hear someone say, “They are very smart.” Is there a difference between being lucky or smart?

lucky or smart appreciative strategies

Good Luck

We sometimes assume that luck simply happens. You get lucky if you win the lottery against very big odds. Luck might be with you when you pick the date for the summer picnic and that day the weather is amazing.

Many people might agree that luck implies we have little or no control over the situation.

Bad Luck

We might feel unlucky if we get a flat tire on our car, or we get sick with a cold right before several very busy days in our schedule.

The truth about luck, good or bad, is that often the outcomes are conditioned by how you manage it.

Have the most successful people been lucky? Are they smarter?

Lucky or Smart

The multi-million dollar winner of the lottery might become completely broke within just a few years. In contrast, the person with nearly nothing might become quite successful in a very short time. Both are the result of how their situation was managed.

This is exactly why you have to be smart. Smart isn’t always the most educated. It isn’t always the most experienced. Being smart often means you feel a responsibility and hold yourself accountable for your actions and decisions.

Analyze the data, consider the facts, use your knowledge and base it on your experiences. Sure, you can consult with others, get opinions, and make best guesses. You can do research and examine all options. Just make sure you are doing it smart.


It’s not always the fastest, it’s not necessarily the most calculated, and it doesn’t mean that it is low risk. Smart means you do the absolute best you can with everything you do. It means you make the best choices, not necessarily the easiest ones.

You may not always like the options but you still have to decide. Sometimes a decision to do nothing is still a decision. You’ll have to make the best one at the time, live with it, and make more.

Are you lucky or smart?

Either way it’s always about what you decide.


Dennis E. Gilbert is a business consultant, speaker (CSPTM), and corporate trainer that specializes in helping businesses and individuals accelerate their leadership, their team, and their success. He is a four-time author and some of his work includes, Forgotten Respect, Navigating A Multigenerational Workforce and Pivot and Accelerate, The Next Move Is Yours! Reach him through his website at Dennis-Gilbert.com or by calling +1 646.546.5553.

Dennis Gilbert on Google+

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Genuine is Smart

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Genuine sells. People know when they are getting something genuine, not because someone says it is so, or because the marketing, literature, or propaganda say it is so. We have genuine parts, genuine draft [beer], and genuine authentic foods, but it doesn’t matter what they say, it matters when you know.


We are a product of our life experiences; buy, sell, trade, feedback, opportunities, success, and failures. Active people are interpreting data, analyzing feedback, and considering observations from others actions and behaviors. They learn, or they don’t.

It is the person who over does it, under does it, speaks nonsense, repetitively acts foolish, or uses others ideas as their own brand. They stand out, but not because they are great, because they are obvious.

Genuine is part of character, part of trust, and part of your success. Just like in marketing and advertising, you can have a good idea and spend too little, or a bad idea and spend too much. The idea that works and supports your mission is what you constantly seek. You strive for it because it is real, it is genuine.

Some will always want genuine, some are satisfied with a knock-off. When it comes to people, products, and services, genuine sells, genuine is smart.

Be genuine.


Photo Credit: Mark Morgan

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